Welcome to another episode of the Time for Teacher podcast. I have Jason Reagan on with me today doing a unit dreaming episode. So Jason is the middle years program coordinator at the Western Academy of Beijing. His teaching background is in design education. Jason has been in education for 25 years, 19 of which in IB schools, the majority of his career has been overseas in international schools. It is this international experience that has sparked his excitement in curriculum implementation and leadership with a passion for curriculum. It is no surprise that his ultimate goal is to further his experience in curriculum and instructional development within international schools. Since 2008. Jason has been a trainer of IB educators and has participated in IB educator network sponsored events worldwide. He conducts IB workshops, consults for Canada IB schools and serves as a visiting team member and leader for IB school visits to today. He has participated in nearly 100 IB related events in more than 15 countries. I am so excited for today's unit dreaming episode with Jason Reagan. Let's get to it. Educational justice coach Lindsay Lyons. And here on the time for teacher podcast. We learn how to inspire educational innovation for racial and gender justice design curricula grounded in student voice and build capacity for shared leadership.
I'm a former teacher leader turned instructional coach. I'm striving to live a life full of learning, running, baking, traveling, and parenting because we can be rockstar educators and be full human beings if you're a principal assistant superintendent, curriculum director, instructional coach or teacher who enjoys nerdy out about co creating curriculum with students. I made this show for you. Here we go. Jason, welcome to the Time for Teacher podcast. Hi. Thank you, Lindsay. I'm so excited to be here. Oh my gosh. I'm so excited to have you and I, I I'm very excited about the style of episode, which is kind of still in its early stages. So thanks for being game to, to work on this. Hey, I am always game. So anyone out there listening, let me know I'm game. Awesome. So I would love to share you have, aside from our typical guest, you have a very unique context that you work in. And so do you mind just kind of providing that context to people? So we can think about that unit in that context and then any other sort of like, you know, spark or anything you're thinking about before we kind of start that we can house the unit and kind of absolutely.
Thank you again, Lindsey. I am so honored to be here and humbled to be here that you thought of me as a guest. It's exciting. And um so my name's Jason Regan and um I work in an, an uh what's called a Full Continuum IB school. So that means that it's a, it's a three year old to 12th grade school. Um It's based in Beijing China. So I live overseas, I've been living overseas for nearly 20 years um of my teaching career. And um the school I'm currently in is an an, an, an international Baccalaureate school. So that means that from the time students enter school to the time they graduate, they're following this international philosophy, this international kind of game plan. And so my context is quite different from, I did teach in public schools in the States, but my context is very different. Um It's a private uh fee paying school and there are certain rules about who can attend the school and who cannot. Um and so only certain passport holders are allowed due to local law.
Um And so most of the students in my school um are either um teachers, kids, so teachers who are in the school and their kids because it's a pretty big school. Um Also, you've got, we're in the same district where a lot of the um the embassies uh that are in Beijing are based. And so we have lots of embassy families. Additionally, we have a lot of other um un related families or um high, we, there's the universal student is based in Beijing and there's a whole bunch of those families. And so it's, it's, it's a real mixture of, of, of kids and, and families that are in the school. Um We have over 50 nations um represented a across uh the school and so you can hear all kinds of languages walking down the hall. Now, I know that's not necessarily different from some people's school context. But in this situation, um we really do embrace mother tongue and we really do embrace the idea that everyone can have different opinions and different ideas and they can all be tolerated and they can all be right according to the context.
And so um also a lot of our students, the families do pay tuition. So uh it's not a, I know I've worked in a title one school, it's not that kind of situation. Um However, you know what middle schoolers are, middle schoolers, right? No matter where you go. And so my context is quite different in that, that I do uh work in that kind of environment. Awesome. Thank you for just sharing that. I think that's really helpful to think about as we like brainstorm, right? Like having Multilingual um you know, an ex Multilingual experience and being able to draw on that skill set and 50 nations are presented. That's so cool. And I imagine that will really um be part of, you know, the, you know, we create. Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. It's, it's a really nice environment and, um, I, I don't know, it's just, I, I have two Children in the school and I couldn't think of any other way to raise them. Um, but to be in a situation where they're exposed to lots of different, um, experiences and people. Uh, so, yeah. II, I love, I love being where I'm at.
That's awesome. It's, uh, it sounds so cool. So as we get started into this unit, is there any sort of thing that you in terms of the subject or the kind of like spark of inspiration of like, I kind of want to do something around this. Is there anything that initially comes to mind for you? Thank you for asking. I totally just whiffed and didn't say what my background is. And so I teach a subject called design um and design education. Um in the States, we would call it preen engineering or we might call it robotics. So it, it kind of encompasses all those things. So the main thing to remember is we follow a design cycle which is going to very sim looks very similar to like design thinking or design sprint kind of situation. Uh So my background is in teaching that I was trained as an industrial arts teacher. Um And so that should tell you how long ago I was trained that ages me a bit. But um so I've been using rubrics and I've been using um you know, proficiency levels in students since I started teaching over 25 years ago.
And so for me, that's actually how we teach where I'm at now. So what's really been um on my mind and kind of on my heart lately is um my school being so diverse. Our, our next phase of development in the school, the next chapter has to do. And we've talked about this before Lindsay is to do with sustainability and not only just environmental sustainability, but organizational sustainability, recruitment, sustainability all the way across that. And then additionally, we're really pushing, I say, pushing, trying to develop our um what we call ideas. So um in, I knew I was gonna whiff it's diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice. Um And so that's, that's really something that I think as we're emerging in wanting to make that more prevalent in the things that we do. I, I think looking at some kind of unit where we address those things or at least bring about awareness of those things is kind of what I'd like to do.
So that's, that's my background. That's, and that's where I kind of want to go. I don't know if that's on board with what you're keen to do, but that's what I would love to do. Yeah, that sounds amazing. So I love these ideas and, and one of the things that I think it, it maps really nice to many of the things you've talked about is Dr Goldie Mohammed's five for Suits. And so usually, I think about three that I think are typically not seen so much. So that's identity. So how do students identities, right? Thinking about that national identity, linguistic identity, all those pieces in addition to many others criticality. So thinking about social justice, like what is the injustice we're seeing or how do we see like a lack of sustainability in, in the world or our communities? And then also joy. So how does like doing all these things? Thinking about the design and the artistic background that you have? I think there's so much joy just inherent in that, right? And so I'm wondering if hearing those words, identity, criticality and joy, what comes to mind for you around? Like, what could students kind of pursue or look into or explore as they're going through a unit? Um That, that would be something that, that you'd be interested in creating.
I, you know, and I was thinking about this all day uh leading up to our chat and I think something I would love to see the joy I love. I mean, I absolutely think everything should have a, an element of fulfillment in it. Um And so I, I think that I have found in my experience of however many years of design teaching that students really love it because of the hands on nature, because of it's relevant it, it's very, it's able to pivot quite quickly to the current situation. So, um there, therefore, I find that joy comes pretty naturally through it. What I would love to see more is is thinking about things from alternate perspectives. And when I say alternate perspectives, I mean, multiple entry points into what we're gonna talk about. So, um I'll give you an example of why I feel this is important. I hope this is OK. Um Something I didn't mention uh my wife is Chinese. And so we have constant discussions about the difference in the way we grew up.
And we were ordering something online one time and we were on a Chinese website and I kept seeing this green arrow next to the seller of these items. And I kept saying that's a green arrow that it's pointing up, that's good. And she says, no, no, no green is bad and red is good. And I was like one small thing completely changed. I just assumed that green was good, but in Chinese culture, red is a lucky color. Um And so, you know, there's some differences in the way the symbolism works. And so for them, the green arrow up means they're getting more and more bad reviews or they're not ca call following through where the red going down means that it's actually really good. So when I think about design and I think about my students designing apps or prototyping different things, I actually tell them that same example and some of them who may have a Chinese background are like, yeah, of course, green is bad. Right. So it's, I, I think I want to bring in an element of looking at, uh, something that might seem mundane or, or basic but to see how it's perceived from a different lens and I, that's what I would like to see.
I hope that kind of is in line with what you're talking about. But I, I just think about that. Yeah, absolutely. I love that and, and it's so simple but the underlying skill like the skill that you're using in something like that is so transferrable to so many like life situations that it seems like it would be really cool to just get, get that just perspective taking, you know, with a critical lens down to then be able to, to extend that in different spaces. Oh, so cool. Um So I have for joy, we got the fulfillment, the hands on the relevant, the current super joyful criticality. We're doing like the alternate perspectives, multiple entry points, anything for identity. I think they kind of overlap some of the things you talk about a little bit. Um The identity I actually have thought a lot about and I've tried to incorporate this in the past. But um if you'll, if you'll look back to when people talk about innovators, they're usually white guys, right? And, and I, I just say that what it is, it's, if people think they start to name people who they quote unquote are innovators.
And it's often people from the industrial revolution, from western countries or uh or, or current, you know, innovators and they're usually white fellas, right? And so my, I would love, I always try to bring in um at various various perspectives that are not represented um in that. So we talk about innovation or we talk about a product or a system or whatever that's been um developed. And we, I want to look at it from, wait a minute, didn't you know that the Chinese developed a wheelbarrow, right? Like the wheelbarrow that you, you use. So I'm using Chinese there, but you know, it could be any number of things. And so we often will do that. We'll also often trace. Um for example, there's a poster I used to use called the world in a candy bar. And it was where that we traced where every bit of the Hershey's candy bar came from. That's the wrapper, that's the ink that's in the paper, like everything and very often 90% of it was not in a westernized um developed country.
It was often coming from a country that was somewhat exploited and taken advantage of. So um and I don't want to just get into geopolitical stuff, but I that's where we, that's, that's little hanging fruit, right? Like that's where we can, that's where we can have an entry point and then start to look at the next level down. And so, um, that's, that's kind of what I'm looking at figures and looking at, um, groups and how they innovate has often been a way for me to bring in the identity part. So, yeah, that's what I've been thinking. Oh, I love that. That makes me think of so many things. Great. Bring it on. I mean, I I think of like the the geopolitics as just being super interesting, right? And I think of, I mean, even like a design of like how is the rapper designed to bring awareness to the idea of 90% of these coming from non Western Spaces or you know, just like that kind of thing. But also like you were talking about like the design, like early on, you're talking about the kind of the um like design approach and, and often in like Western Spaces, we have this kind of like design cycle and I actually, I'm not sure if that like innovation cycle and the design process are super westernized.
I don't know enough about it to know what it was like. Yeah, so like, i it's really interesting right? To think about like what are these other design processes and innovation methods and approaches um that are coming from other spaces that are not Western and, and I think that in and of itself is really fascinating, like what's even the process that you go through to create the design and how is that, you know, like either prioritized or held back or marginalized, right? Like, oh super interesting. So I'm curious to know now, like, if you were to think of like an ideal like project that students were working through and I think we could go either direction here, either a driving question that frames the project and the whole unit like something students are grappling with or sometimes it seems to be easier to kind of jump to the project itself and be like, what's the publishing opportunity or what audience will engage with, you know, like what the students are doing? Um What comes to mind first in terms of like backwards planning here. Yeah. Um So yeah, that always is gonna depend on the age group and kind of what their maturity level is.
Um I'm kind of shooting for like an upper middle school, early high school kind of age because there's a certain level of maturity where we can have um discussions about things that are not always really positive um about where the cocoa plants come from for the chocolate or whatever. Um And so there's that I also um for older students, I've worked with um 11th and 12th graders, we get into manufacturing and we talk about um the Japanese style of manufacturing, which is what a lot of current a practice in manufacturing is based on. Um There's some great movies out there. One with Michael Keaton, uh, that was about the car where he went and worked in Japan anyway. So, um, but they, they developed just in time manufacturing which saves tons and tons and tons of money, which was something that was not developed in a western country. Um, but yeah, so there's different things like that. So I actually have found one really great way to do. This is to have students design um a package for a, a some sort of product.
And they're very intentional. Number one in the way in which we design the package, the um the the pattern or the net that they use to cut out the package. Maybe it's like the, the Lindor Chocolate deal where it's like a, looks like a bag, but it's actually a box kind of thing, you know, and the idea is not only to do with the design but the actual information that goes on it uh that about being fair trade, about how much of it comes from recycled materials is the ink sustainable those kinds of things. So we look into where these things come from and in many cases, um like the ink comes from India. Um and we start to talk about work, work conditions and we start talking about how does it get from one place and how is that, you know, bleeding over into the, into the water, you know, source and into the water table. So, there's a lot of very easy things to sort of tie into. But with um older students, I would, I would do like a package type project um with the intention of, yeah, it's a package but it's more about I'm tying in all these other trans disciplinary themes from these other subjects, right?
Of, of social justice, of sustainability, of, of identity. Um getting into how do these colors play together? What does this texture mean? Um Is this coming across as being masculine? Um Is this coming across as being too feminine? You know, like what, what are the messages that you're not sharing, that you're really sharing through your design? So that's, that's sort of what I would, I would look into is, and that allows them to get into the idea of how we use market marketing, how we use different psychology, you know, the psychology behind the buyer. Um And so that's, that's kind of, and then sometimes I'll make it where they have to then design a website where it's sold from and how are they going to um how, how are, how are they going to appeal to, what particular audience that they've identified? Right. And one thing I do do is I make sure they have to have a real audience member who will they have to ask questions of. So they have, they can't just say teenagers, right?
They have to be really specific about who because if you don't have a real target audience then it's, it's useless. It's, it's just you making things for you and you're never gonna have someone you can actually ask real questions to. And so, um, that be, that's kind of what comes to mind and it's pretty easy. It doesn't have to be a design project. This could be a social studies project. It could be an art. There's so many different places where this could kind of be tied into. Um So that would be kind of what I'm I'm thinking. Oh my gosh, I love it. And, and you're right, it could be, it could be a really cool as like either an interdisciplinary, it's very trans discs in like in the content, right? In the connections. And I think anyone listening who teaches like any of those things you just listed could totally use something like this. I'm thinking too like the real audience member piece is brilliant. I I almost am wondering if students could like pitch if they're doing this for a real, a real product that exists, right? Do they pitch that company? And like, hey, like, let's book a meeting, like with someone on your marketing team, even if it's an intern, you know what I mean? Like and just like, let me share with you some of these things such a cool, like real world application, like if they were to actually use an element of that or take that into, you know, their marketing approach.
I'm wondering too for like a driving question so that the project itself so cool. What is the driving question that the project answers? Do you know what I mean? Like, what is the thing they're grappling with? It's like, I mean, you might have some idea. So I don't need to go. No, no, that's OK. I, I love this. I actually, as you were talking was also thinking about, I used to teach a lot with cradle to cradle design. This idea of things having 2nd and 3rd life cycles. Um And I was thinking maybe that the actual driving question would be, how can I design this package that can then be reused for something totally different after it's been opened up and used, like maybe it turns inside out and becomes a sun aisle or whatever, you know, like there's so many a kite, you know, I don't know, it could be all kinds of things. Um, or you flip it inside out and it becomes like a, I don't know, a pencil holder on your desk or, you know, this idea that, um we wanna make regenerative regenerate designs. Um And so maybe that's kind of where it is, is that, um, or how can I design for um, an authentic audience?
We do often do like a, a shark tank dragons den type thing where we pull in people from around the school community. Um And then students will have to pitch the idea, um, of what it is they're wanting to do. So we do, we do things like that. So sometimes, but that, you know, that's a lot of organization obviously to make that happen. But it's very authentic. Um, and it is really good to get students, um, aware of, of how these, how these things work. So, yeah, I don't know. Does that work for a driving kind of question? An overarching type thing? Yeah. Oh my gosh. So I have so many thoughts. So what I will go to is like the idea of the shark tank first. I love that. And I almost wonder if this, I mean, it, it is a little bit more uh like narrow versus like expansive, you could choose any product versus like this thing I'm thinking is, is way more like if you had, yeah, if you had something like uh uh hey, everyone, it's Lindsey. I just wanted to tell you about today's episode, Freebie Jason and I talk a lot about Doctor Mohammed's Hill model and the pursuits of identity, criticality and joy.
Our curriculum boot camp planner has that as a component where you can take a little bit deeper of a dive into that template around some of the questions that Doctor Mohammed asks in her literature and in her framework so you can grab that at Lindsay Beth lions dot com slash blog slash 124. Let's get back to the episode. A school product it might be like a T shirt that's designed for like, that year or something, right. Like, could students do that? And then the pitch actually goes to the people making the decisions of the design and everyone in the school gets this t-shirt or something, you know, like, so there's like even more of an immediacy and even more of voice that the students have in terms of influencing the decision. Um, totally, just kind of like a side note that I want, that's OK that it's messy, like you said, it goes all over the place, but we're moving in the right direction, which is, is, is great, right? I mean, I was, I was listening to you and I was thinking we, we actually do a project where um we have clubs in the school, so the club supervisors become the target audience. And so students pick one of the clubs that they want to um make a product for.
So they have to go and talk to them and it's much more open ended. It's not like this project I'm describing where we actually have a product in mind, like this packaging type, whatever. Um And it may not be that, but I like the idea of having it might be that, you know, how do you package the coffee mugs, you know, the tumblers that the school has, has bought for whoever and then there's an event coming and how would you and then how would that package be used again for something else kind of thing or whatever? So, I think there's some really, really cool places we could go with this. I want to go where you wanna go. Oh, so that is so cool. It sounds like you're already doing so much of this. There's already kind of like the foundation in place to do something like this. I'm wondering if the driving question kind of brings it all together in a slightly different way than it has been done. And maybe that's the value add and, and I'm wondering so I do not know a ton about this. But in my leadership studies, there was um an exploration of the triple bottom line which I believe is, is like, so, so it's like a suggestion and, and some, some people do it, I can't remember the company is, but some, some organizations do it.
Um And it's like the, the money obviously is like always the bottom line people typically look at. But then there's also, I think environmental sustainability and like human like humanness, like human impact of like the employees and the exactly and the community. So I'm wondering if the driving question is something that's like, how does the design of this package enable uh the highest triple bottom line or something? And then the students could decide like that could be a, a class, a lesson of like what is the triple bottom line we're talking about like, is it human environment and profit or is it three different things? Um, you know, and, and so what are those? And then also, like, what's the metric for good? You know what I mean? Like, what if, like, what if we have like a huge profit for this company, this product? But there's like a ok environmental impact, you know, like, is that good enough and like, what's, what's good, almost like kind of co creating the rubric for the product or something? Um I don't know, what are your thoughts on that? I'm not sure two things. Uh I love the idea of a co-creator rubric. I've done it with students and it's awesome.
They're often a lot more difficult on them, a lot harder on themselves than I would be. Um So that's good. The second thing is um you're talking about the triple bottom line. Absolutely love it. Why don't we replace the triple bottom line aspects though, with things like um identity, sustainability and you know, these three things, these three pillars that you were talking about and therefore it creates the discussion, the dialogue, the discourse to happen prior to it. And therefore it drives our driving question of OK, this package, how, how does this help um you know, whoever or whatever, you know. So, I mean, I think there's all kinds of ways maybe there has to be one aspect of it, which um you know, accommodates a neuro diverse person or something of those, you know what I mean? Like, maybe something along those lines. Um, so, or maybe it can't have adhesives, um, in it. So, like, um, yeah, yeah. So I, I know some students who have tactile things and they can't have stickers or anything like tape or glue around them because of the sound, but also the tactile ness of it.
And so maybe how, how would I serve them, um, with this package so that it doesn't send them into orbit, right? When they go to touch this thing, right? So I don't know, I'm just, I'm thinking because the triple bottom line, yeah, we, we teach that actually, which I think is awesome that you brought that up. No, it's for older students but it's a, it's when we talk about just in time manufacturing and stuff, but I love it. I think it's awesome but why not teach that in younger grades? So when they get to those higher high school classes, they're already thinking about this, right? Like how are we serving our community? How are we helping the school be more sustainable by doing this? Do we need a package? What if a student asked me that? Right? Like do we need a package? Right? No package. You know, maybe that's their idea. So I love this so much and, and I'm thinking that's so brilliant. Identity criticality. Joy is a triple bottom line and I love that it connects back to your idea of like the core idea that you were kind of sharing the alternate perspective, the multiple entry points, like you could have a whole week about each identity and then another week about criticality and like, so identity could be like each day we're exploring 1 to 2 different identities, how would they interact with this package?
Um I love that because you're literally having people each day, like the students are trying on like one or two new kind of like perspectives and they're fully immersed with this like thing that they're actually doing. Like they're actually working on this product and this design which I imagine is most of your classes like design work, but like there's this authentic thing and it really makes sense to kind of put on that hat, so to speak and, and engage with these three components. So cool. How cool is that? Right? I mean, like, I mean, we could call it something else, maybe call it the the Triple Aware Enlightenment or something like we could have some fun name for it, but the idea would be the same principle, but we're using these three, these are our, this is our rubric, right? These are our three points that we're using to, you know, I don't know how we would measure joy unless it's the way we create um our survey for our target audience, right? Like does this project spark joy, right? Like does it, what's joy to you, maybe they have to start by interviewing them first to find out what brings them joy and then they make their product and then they share it again and say, does this, you know, kind of what aspects of this brings you joy.
So I think that it could easily be our rubric along with the technical end of things. Where are they using their skills to do such and such? And so, and so, but I think those three things could be our major driving force uh behind the whole, you know, they're using that as a context to learn these skills, right? And to put these skills into, into action, I love that. And I, and I'm thinking too, like you could even have a whole class or an activity within a class of students co creating the name, like, like you're saying, playing with the name of like, are we calling it a triple bottom line? Is it, you know, like, what is it? And each class kind of have their own kind of thing? That's right. That would be fun. Yeah. And I, and I love, love the idea of having surveys of the target audience to determine joy because it's like, right, joy is so there, it's so expensive, it's subjective. And so like you can't just determine like this class thinks it's joyful but someone else might not. Well, that's right. That's why you need an authentic, you know, authentic person to talk to, right?
Or authentic group of people um to talk to because some things might seem joyous to some people, but absolutely horrifying to others. And so I think that's where the, the, the deeper conversations could then start to occur. Right? And, and happen. So, yeah. Oh my gosh. So cool. So, I think the, the final kind of question around the unit I think is, is there some sort of like hook lesson that you would be interested in? Like having us kind of the lesson zero or, or whatever of, you know, how do we draw students into this question and grapple with this question? Like would you be doing the triple bottom line conversation first? Would you be looking at different packaging and just inviting questions? Like what would that first lesson look like? Um Yeah, I mean, I think either one of any of those things would work. I often um I'm a consumer but I'm also uh uh always learning and so anytime I get a package, I disassemble it a box that I think is interesting because I travel a lot and and a box in Japan and a box in Singapore are very different than a box in uh Wisconsin, right?
Like, I mean, the way that they they're assembled, the way that they're very thoughtfully created. So any time I have a new kind of package or has new ink or it has some really cool information on the back the best packages I've ever found or labels I've ever found have come from Australia where just the stuff that's on them is just so cool. Um, like they even tell where the honey was sourced from the bee and they all these different things. So I've always kept those things and I laminate them or I put them in my classroom as examples. And so often that's what I'll do is I'll pull out this box of this, of all the, this carton of all this stuff. And then we'll just have a discussion. And so I often ask him, where do you think this is from? And blah, blah, blah, and what was in it? And, and then we kind of have that's sort of the engaging, bringing in tuning in type thing. Um And then the next lesson is they're all challenged with bringing in uh interesting package of their own or label of their own, right? That they find and they have to kind of justify why that's an important package to them, right?
So some kids take it seriously and some don't, but it's a, it's free, you know, and everyone buys stuff, right? So it's a great way to bring stuff in. I love this idea because I think of the unit a typically as like a hook lesson then kind of like this, build the base is usually what I call it like a foundational concept that you're gonna explore. So maybe that's the what is the triple bottom line? And like what are the things we're looking at as we do this? But then I'm thinking even the packaging that the students are bringing in could inform like, I usually think of case studies as kind of the part three of the Americans like, OK, now we're looking at either the case studies could be the lens of a particular identity or criticality lens or a joyful lens or whatever. But it could also be like, let's look at these types of materials or this geography or company like let's look at their materials as a whole. That could be super cool. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, it's, that's a great idea. And um yeah, and then, and then we can go deeper, right? Like we can talk about this trifecta of the triple bottom line and then OK, I'm gonna introduce now, let's replace um profit with, you know, with this idea of identity, right?
And then let's replay. So then we can start talking about the moving pieces because then it's a great segue into, I like this idea of this, changing the triple bottom line to something else and calling it something else, you know, like the, I don't know, the, the, the Trinity, I love it, the inclusion Trinity. I guess this would be so cool to like, I think it's like you do the project at the end. It could definitely be, you know, like the audience is the community. But it could also be very, I think valuable for many companies to just think differently. Even someone who's already using the traditional triple bottom line to think a little bit differently about what specifically like, have we considered joy at all? Like maybe that isn't something, you know, or maybe we're very focused on specific identities but not other identities because like the the human idea, right could be like we are helping the community that we're locally in, but maybe we're not helping another community that is adjacent or our employees are kind of overlooked.
So I think that would be really interesting. I, I doubt people are thinking about the texture for, for students who, you know, don't like the sticky material or something, right? Like you, you were saying, I, no one, I very few people I think are probably thinking about that. So that's so valuable to bring that perspective. Right. Right. Yeah. Absolutely. And I think, you know, even surveying our own students on what brings them joy and then moving out to, you know, because age and, and place and time change, what people find joy in and fulfillment in. And so I think it would be interesting to hear what an 11 year old thinks versus what a 41 year old to think, right, about what joy brings and things like that. And so I think um that's another aspect, another element of, you know, the generational, you know, all these different ageism, of all the stuff. Um So I, I think there's a whole lot of different ways we can approach that. Um And it's, I mean, really, it's, I don't mean basic, but it's kind of a basic concept of, I've been doing a project similar to this for many, many, many years.
Uh It used to be a toothpaste box and then it was this or then it was that, um, and, and I've opened it up year after year because I, I want to see different things, right? I wanna see what people are um are what the students are coming up and they always surprise me, right? They always come up with some fantastic stuff. So I think they would be open to looking at how does this connect to joy? How does this connect to me being? And I know they think about sustainability from environmental because that's what we always connect it with. But is the workforce that's producing this ink? Is that sustainable? What they're doing? Right? Like is, is, is their work their, their, their work power being sustained. Um Is the delivery guy who's bringing it there on his gas powered scooter, you know, is that, is that sustainable? Right. So, or, or they're running red lights? I mean, he's risking his life to get that there by a certain time, right. So there's so many different elements that we could, we could dig into. Yes. Oh my gosh.
I was thinking the same idea of the delivery at front like Amazon, right is like their workers and employees have been very vocal about like the working conditions and the pressures of delivering on this particular time frame. And so I think that would be so I'm just thinking as a, as a consumer, right? II I have continued to use Amazon because it is helpful to me. But thinking about that if that was a little bit more, um, a parent and like I unbox this, you know, thing and I look at and it's like, oh, like this was delivered through Amazon which, you know, costs this person this, yeah, like it would be very in your face. Right. So even if I, as a person who knows about it, if it was confronted with me every time that I opened a box, right? Or something, then I'm, I'm maybe making some different choices. So I, I, that's really interesting to think about. Wow. And that, that could be part of their second life of their package is on the inside. It gives the real story of this package. You know what I mean? Like, where did this come from? I mean, and I don't want to get into the, you know, some of the political stuff but in, in Asian countries, um, um, when you buy cigarettes, there's pictures of bad lungs on the front, right?
Like it's, it's really disgusting and so it's the idea being that every time you buy that you're going to have to look at that. You know, it's very deliberate that they've done that. And so, um, it's just another, I just thought about that when you said that. I mean, how cool would it be if, when you open the package that said Amazon on the inside, it had the road map of where it all came from, right? Like, I mean, that the journey it took and how much it cost each person and what it cost each person would be really interesting. Um So for older students, particularly they could even get into debates um about using palm oil or doing whatever, you know, depending on the particular situation. So yeah, there's a lot of different ways we could go. Yeah. Oh my gosh. Yeah, I could talk all day about this. This is, this is great. Um I think as a, as a kind of like a closing just to be mindful of time here. Absolutely. I'm curious to know like the about the process that we just went through, like, what does this feel like in terms of like uh uh or what currently?
How are you feeling kind of after we've gone, gone through this process? Like, did it feel super messy? Are you feeling a particular kind of um this is, this is where this is where I would change or do this differently or could we use in the future, you know? I'm just curious to know what that felt like. Yeah. No, no, I, I think having a, a person to, to just kind of talk things out with is really, really helpful. Um because in the past I would have just stopped at making the package and having a really basic low level um objective with, OK, it has to give this information on it and it has to fit together and it would be very logistical and very technical with that kind of stuff. Um I like the idea of having a, a very different dimension. Um and it might be obviously we're gonna have some students who are able to barely manage to complete it and then others who might have that extension. And I think for them that might be what this is, is this is where we go into more of the extended exercises for some of them where they can because we do, we do, at least in my context, we have a lot of students who are very outwardly thinking, they're honestly thinking about how is this going to affect the people around me and that kind of thing.
So I do think for those particular students who are very empathetic and have a high level of emotional intelligence for a 12 year old, right? Um I think this would be really great as a way to extend it. I do worry about, I do have some quite uh serious neuro diverse students and So for them completing the package and having it put together would be successful for them. But the the others would be a lot, a lot, you know, better to extend that. So that's kind of what my thinking is. Yeah, that's a really good point. And I almost wonder too if like the nerd divert students who may have some challenges there could like we just really leverage that lens of like your expertise is incredibly valuable in just how you exist in the world and how you perceive things. So like, maybe we lean into that, like you're gonna be interviewed a lot and, and maybe you are um communicating to the rest of your class via writing or presentations or whatever skill could be like kind of a helpful skill builder there. Um To just say like this is a strength and sometimes we can just play into strengths as opposed to like constantly growing.
I mean, like we're growing our strengths but constantly growing our deficits, right? Which I think is as an educator is something I'm always thinking about. So that's super interesting. Yeah. And it, it seems to be too like because it's I wanted this to be valuable hopefully for you and a conversation about something that you've already done this project for so many years, you know, like so so often it's, it seems to me just reflecting back because this is a super selfish part of the interview where I'm like, I just want to know what seems helpful so that I can help more people. So it seems like the identity criticality and joy piece really helped kind of take the project to that next place. Is that right? Absolutely. Absolutely. Ok. Yeah, Doctor Mohammed's work is amazing. Uh Yeah, absolutely. I love the idea of maybe putting that into the exchanging portions or the whole thing for that triple bottom line. I think that would be really, really useful for lots of different reasons. Awesome. OK. Awesome. Thank you. So I want people to be able to find your podcast because you have a podcast as well and, and all the, so do you want to share with people how they can get in touch with you or listen to your show?
Yeah, I mean, the, the easiest way is to just connect with me on Twitter. Um and I can hope can give you that information, you can put it in the show notes. Uh But yeah, connecting with me on Twitter. It's got all the connection stuff there on my profile um on my bio page or whatever. And so, yeah, absolutely. That would be the best way to do it. And then I always put um links to my, my shows on my Twitter profile first um on my feed. So that would be the best way to go. Perfect Jason, thank you so much for being game to do this. I think it was a beautiful. It was a great conversation. Thank you. If you're leaving this episode wanting more, you're going to love my life, coaching intensive curriculum, boot camp. I help one department or grade team create feminist anti racist curricula that challenges affirms and inspires all students. We weave current events into course content and amplify student voices which skyrockets engagement and academic achievement. It energizes educators feeling burns out and it's just two days. Plus you can reuse the same process any time you create a new unit which saves time and money.
If you can't wait to bring this to your staff, I'm inviting you to sign up for a 20 minute call with me. Grab a spot on my calendar at www dot Lindsay beth lions dot com slash contact. Until next time leaders continue to think. Big act brave and be your best self. This podcast is a proud member of the Teach Better podcast network, better today, better tomorrow and the podcast to get you there, explore more podcasts at teach better dot com slash podcasts and we'll see you at the next episode.
124. Unit Dreaming: Re-Designing the Triple-Bottom Line with Jason Reagin
124. Unit Dreaming: Re-Designing the Triple-Bottom Line with Jason Reagin